The standard pilates abdominal curl should be a basic part of any pilates routine. The abdominal curl is a very big part of the the fact that pilates is known for building "core strength".
With the shorter and slower movements this exercise concentrates on the deeper muscles in the stomach which, while is not developing the muscles seen in a six-pack, the result is a flatter stomach and definitely for strength from this region.
- Lay flat on the floor flat on your back.
- Knees up and bent so that the hip is approximately 45 degrees.
- Your shoulder blades should be on the floor.
- Place your hands lightly behind your neck. This is not used to lift but rather to abtain the correct body weight balance for the exercise.
- Take a deep breath.
- While slowly exhaling, slowly lift the chest from about midway up the back. this movement should only be slight.
- At the end of the movement slowly inhale again while returning to the starting position.
- Repeat ten times.
Notes on the movement:
- Be certain that the lower back does not arch and push the stomach up. Control ling this actually assists in the exercise.
- Do not apply any pressure with the hands behind the neck.
- If the neck does feel any fatigue gently roll the neck from side to side between repetitions.